Social conservatives air pro-HB2 ad

Posted October 5, 2016

This is a still image from an Institute for Faith and Family ad defending HB2.

— Social conservatives say they will spend $215,000 on broadcast television and digital media buys in the Raleigh market to bolster North Carolina's House Bill 2.

"Our television ad is necessary to tell the truth about HB2 by educating North Carolinians about the danger and risk associated with laws and policies like Charlotte’s ridiculous ordinance, which would have forced private businesses, churches, schools and public buildings to open their women’s bathrooms and locker rooms to any man claiming to be a woman, even if that person has male anatomy," said Tami Fitzgerald, executive director of the Institute for Faith and Family.

Fitzgerald has been the front-woman for a number of social conservative groups and causes, including the North Carolina Values Coalition, and helped lead the campaign on behalf of the state's now defunct constitutional amendment banning gay marriage.

Her comment is typical of backers of the law, who have sought to blame Charlotte for passing an ordinance that would have required businesses to allow transgender individuals to use the bathroom of their choice. House Bill 2 negated that local ordinance, but it went further, creating a statewide nondiscrimination law that excludes LGBT individuals.

Many businesses and entertainers reacted negatively by either refusing to perform in North Carolina, withdrawing conferences or, in at least once case, refusing to locate a new facility here. Most recently, sports leagues such as the Atlantic Coast Conference have withdrawn tournament games from the state.

The institute's ad focuses only on the law's bathroom provisions.

In the 30-second spot, a young woman described in a news release as a high school student from Greenville defends House Bill 2.

"Just changing in front of girls my own age is intimidating," she says to the camera. "Now, they want boys to shower and change beside me? It's not just about privacy, it's safety too. Charlotte's ordinance gives men access to what should be a very private place. HB2 is a fix. It protects my privacy and safety."

It is rare but not unheard of for a group to defend a particular act of the General Assembly that has already passed rather than a candidate or cause. However, recent polls, including a WRAL News survey released Tuesday, showed that more than half of voters in the state disapprove of the law, and more than 60 percent believe it is hurting the state's national reputation and fiscal well-being.

Political scientists say the bill could be hurting Gov. Pat McCrory's re-election chances, as well as the prospects of Republicans in suburban legislative seats. Three-quarters of respondents to the WRAL News poll said House Bill 2 would either strongly or somewhat influence their vote.

"HB2 has hurt our state for months now. It's an economic disaster and discriminates against LGBT North Carolinians," said state Rep. Chris Sgro, D-Guilford, who also is executive director of LGBT advocacy group Equality NC. "This desperate and false attempt to fear-monger by Governor McCrory's allies shows just how out of touch he is with North Carolina, and it's not going to work. We call on McCrory to denounce the false ad and commit to a real conversation about how HB2 is hurting our state."


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  • Andy Jackson Oct 7, 2016
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    Exactly. I better not catch a body with a penis using the same rest room, and/or locker room with my daughter. Just saying.... All these folks crying foul about the rights of transgenders...what about the rights of others? One-sided thinking maybe, I think so. Transgenders made a choice to make a change - fine; the rest of us use the rest rooms as to how God created us. Period.

  • Rodney Hill Oct 7, 2016
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    I wish I had 1% of every dollar that's been lost or wasted defending this uneeded/unenforceable bill that benefits no one.

    It's amazing to me that McCrory is willing to lose the election by defending this moronic bill.

  • Justin Briller Oct 7, 2016
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    First off, if you have a penis you belong in the men's rest room. If you have a vagina you belong in the women's rest room. Plain and simple. Feelings change, but genetics do not. For those in doubt take a blood sample to the lab and have it tested. For the very minute percentage of people who are classified as hermaphrodites they choose which restroom they use. Man has been around for many many years and now people are confused which rest room to use. GEEEZ

  • Bryan Jeffries Oct 6, 2016
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    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA...what's that? It ISN'T supposed to be comedic? That is some world class fear mongering with zero factual evidence presented. Bravo.

  • Lance Boyle Oct 6, 2016
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    I wonder why she did not talk about all the provisions of the bill. To be transparent like a good Conservative, all the information needs to talked about openly.

  • Alan Womack Oct 6, 2016
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    Well, when "social Conservative", "Churches" and other "faith-based" groups are allowed to try and influence political policies and voters, then politics should be able to return the favor. Time for any "faith-based" non-profit group to start paying taxes just like everyone else who is allowed to have a say in government. Heck, they might even end up paying LESS if they organize themselves into corporations, or simply follow their precious leader's path and do what Trump does.

  • Jon Rey Oct 5, 2016
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    So do you not use the same bathroom at your home? Stalls. Think stalls with doors. I know you must have those in mens bathrooms. There are no stalls without doors in the ladies bathroom.

  • Jon Rey Oct 5, 2016
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    So let us dive into this. A person that is dressed as a female, walks and talks as a female, who wants to pass as a female, will not expose themselves to the other females. They do their toilet and shower in private. Do you think a person dressed like a female will use the urinal or go into a private stall in the mens room? The habit of using the bathroom of their appearance has been happening forever. 99.999% of the time you are not going to know. And, what of those who have had surgery...the birth certificate will not change but those folks are forced, by NC law, to use the bathroom that does not match their appearance. So women will be walking into the mens room while those that look like a male now must use the women restroom. How comfortable will everyone be with that? Just when you thought the law made this all simple...

  • Jon Rey Oct 5, 2016
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    Blows my mind that the law now mandates that LGBT folks that look male use
    the ladies room and LGBT folks that look female must use the mens room. The law does just this. Already read news where women were forced out of their restroom
    because some thought they looked to much like a male. These were just normal
    females, abused because they did not look feminine. This was never a problem
    until the bill was passed. Insane. Fire the GOP, repeal that terrible law that
    has hurt NC, and restore sanity with the Democrats!

  • Paul Gallant Oct 5, 2016
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    $215,000 to defend an unenforceable bill that attacks a group of people who where not bothering anyone in the first place.... If these were real Christians that $ would have gone to help the needy